So, one week in. How’s the progress coming along?
Not sure what we’re talking about? No worries — check out last week’s blog post for a recap of what’s happening with Google’s Shopping campaigns. Since the big transition will occur in August, let’s get this training started so you’ll be in tip-top shape for the holiday season.
We hope you now have a basic understanding of how Shopping campaigns work. This week, you need to focus on organizing your feed so you can make the most of your new campaigns. Think of Week 2 as the preparation that precedes your new fitness regime. To see long-term benefits, you should plan your nutrition and chart out all the aspects of a balanced diet. The same goes for your Google Product Listing Ads (PLAs).
Start preparing now while focusing on the end result. Here are some aspects of Shopping campaigns to keep in mind as you get organized and begin the transition.
Re-evaluate Your Segmentation
Under the former PLA structure, product targets were the primary way of organizing campaigns.
Google then matched your data feed information from these product targets with the search terms people entered to best determine which ads displayed and at what cost per click (CPC). However, you weren’t able to further segment product targets to maximize individual product performance.
Now you can. Shopping campaigns allow you to organize and group your products into subcategories, such as Brand, Item ID, Condition or Product Type, and assign separate bidding values to each.
Take this time to reassess the current setup of your inventory feed. In most cases, you’ll probably need to reformat to take advantage of the further dissection feature — but trust us, the hard work now will pay off in the long run. It’s vital that your feed is properly aligned to take advantage of the new levels of segmentation.
Set Up Granular Bids
If it’s been a while since you’ve performed any maintenance on your feed, the transition to Shopping campaigns provides an excellent opportunity to get things in order.
Since Google is now allowing you to bid and sort on a more granular level, you want to make sure that your feed isn’t missing any important attributes, such as condition or Item ID, in your product categories that could potentially improve the visibility of your PLAs. Try to fill in as much information as possible.
If you’re finding that you have to add a lot of data, consider beginning with your best-performing products. From there, examine your existing PLA campaigns for underperforming products that have potential to be profitable.
Ultimately, these new levels of segmentation will help increase conversions down the road.
Create Custom Labels
With the introduction of Shopping campaigns, Google replaced AdWords labels as a feed requirement with custom labels.
Custom labels are a new way to label products in your data feed. If the standard attributes in your feed aren’t sufficient to properly group your products, try incorporating custom labels into your feed.
Retailers are limited to five (0-4) custom labels, so it’s best to define the purpose of the label and then begin mapping possible values. Also, since there can only be one label per column, it’s important that all descriptions are aligned under the proper headings. Creating a chart, like the one below, can help you keep label values in order when you finally input them into your feed.
Plan for the Future. Act Now!
Organizing your feed and making sure all the information under your category headings is complete and accurate is the first step to shaping up your campaigns. It sets the stage for everything that lies ahead.
The cleaner, more segmented and better labeled your products are, the better your results will be in the long run.
Once your feed is optimized to take full advantage of Google’s new format, it will be time to begin building out your campaign structure. Be sure to check back in Week 3 as our experts answer some of your specific questions about both organizing your products and developing your campaign structure.